Kings Park connection
Nyoongar is the generic term for Indigenous people of the southwest of Western Australia. The area at the base of Kings Park, known as Goonininup, was an important ceremonial and dreaming area for Aboriginal males.
The Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority is committed to honouring the Indigenous culture associated with Kings Park and Botanic Garden and Bold Park. Further information can be found in the Authority's Reconciliation Action Plan.
Nestled in the heart of the State Botanic Garden, is the stone amphitheatre Beedawong; meaning 'celebration' or 'meeting place'. A tiered performance area, Beedawong was designed by Nyoongar artist Richard Walley and landscape architects Plan E. It is used as a venue for ongoing Nyoongar cultural activities including storytelling, dance performances and quiet reflection. It is also a popular location for Kings Park Festival activities in September. It is an ideal location for weddings, community groups and film and photography.
From Beedawong, you can take a walk through the treetops over the Lotterywest Federation Walkway, which includes designs by local Indigenous people. Further information on Indigenous artworks in Kings Park and Botanic Garden can be found in the Botanic Garden Art Trail brochure.
The Aboriginal Art Gallery is a retail outlet below the Kaarta Gar-up lookout on the city side of Fraser Avenue in Kings Park. The gallery exhibits the works of Aboriginal artists from Western Australia and the Northern Territory and can provide further information on Indigenous culture and tourism services.
Boodja Gnarning Walk
Kings Park and Botanic Garden is home to a diverse range of flora and landscapes, all of which were understood and used for survival by the native Aboriginal people of the South-West, the Nyoongar people. The Boodja Gnarning Walk captures some of this knowledge and explores Nyoongar use of the land. Interpretive signage panels provide information and artworks from the Nyoongar people for visitors to follow while experiencing a selection of Kings Park’s significant attractions.
Kings Park Education celebrates the Park’s Indigenous connection through a selection of exciting, curriculum based school programs. 'Chunyart and the Cheeky Parrot' (K-2) follows the story of an Aboriginal boy and his cheeky friend and is the perfect introduction for young children to basic Nyoongar language and activities.
The history of Kings Park, including its Indigenous heritage, is highlighted in 'From Firesticks to Fireworks' (Y3 – 7). The Nyoongar Boodja series are special events held each term to acknowledge the six seasons of the Nyoongar calendar.
You may like to download the 'Aboriginal Life' brochure for more information about Nyoongar history, including the dreamtime, six Nyoongar seasons, tours available and map of significant locations in Kings Park and Botanic Garden.
You can listen by clicking the play button below or download the file to your mp3 player.
ABC radio interview with Dr Richard Walley
Download interview audio file (5 MB)
Traditional didgeridoo music, performed by Dr Richard Walley
Download traditional music (4 MB)